Return of Thursday Things

I don’t know why I let this meme fall away (oh wait, I’m lazy – of course! how could I forget?)

Thursday’s Thing I Wished I Stitched

How outstanding is this?! A gal by the name of Carol made this beauty. Really made it. It’s her design. Pop over to Flickr and check out her photostream. Full of awesome, color, and fun.

Quilt Festival starts tonight for me at dinner in the city with Cheryl. I doubt I’ll get a chance to blog before Sunday. I may or may not Tweet. But if you want you can follow me on Twitter, I’ll try to get a few pics and thoughts about Festival posted as it happens.

Posted in Quilting, Thursday Things | 1 Comment

Halloween Never Ends Here

Seriously, I got whacked out on some pain pills the other night (shoulder issues) and the next thing I know I’m actively plotting with Facebook friends for next Halloween.  Be that as it may…

Erica (in record time lately – Canada Post HATES ME) received her package.

That’s a Bent Creek finished up as a pinkeep. I would also like to point out the rusched ribbon. I will also draw attention to the fact this is the only rusched ribbon you see in any of my giveaways. This finishing technique was designed by the Devil. Moving on… Pop over to Erica’s blog, she took some spiffy pictures. That is also some well traveled pumpkin fabric, SilverLotus sent it to me as a goodie in an exchange we did earlier this year.  Those little pumpkins have clocked well over 1,000 miles this year.

Valerie’s package also arrived!

Design by With Thy Needle & Thread, I stitched it over one on some 28 count linen banding. I’m also feeling quite pleased with myself for finishing the back with snaps so Valerie can take it off the broom and launder it if need be. Or she could buy more linen banding and make seasonal broom wraps like Marie suggested to me.

In other news I’ve been tweaking the blog, new fall graphics and I’ve added a spiffier Goodreads widget & Google’s Follow Me too. (Shameless begging – please click on it if you do that sort of thing, I love Annette – but I am feeling terribly lonely with only her over there. Thx luv u guys!)

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 12 Comments

Boy am I glad it's over

That’s not to say I don’t love Halloween and the giveaway – but burn out: I has it.

Congrats to Blu, Annette’s sent out the email and I know she’ll forward your reply on to me so don’t worry about that.  To answer a few questions I got during October:

1. Yes, they let me out of the padded room once a year. 😉

2. I spend about 8 weeks in prep time for the giveaway. Not everyday and not hours and hours each day, but on average I’d say each project takes about 6-7 hours. AVERAGE.

3.  I do it because I like it. Halloween is a favorite holiday because it’s only purpose is fun. No family pressure, no hours of cooking and clean up. This also serves as my “payback the Universe” this year. I don’t do many giveaways, I don’t do too many RAKs, and my other exchanges – are exchanges, I get something back for those.  The Halloween Giveaway is my thank you to all the stitchers out there, thank you for all your blogging, giveaways, and general kindness.

Two more packages arrived as of late.

The design is My Pretties by Plum Street Samplers, I stitched it just as charted on 40ct flax linen and finished it just like the picture too. Right down to filling it up with candy corn.

This is one of Just Nan’s Crow Jackers finished up as a scissor fob. After stitching I iron light weight interfacing to the wrong side, this is a good thing to do on items you will be filling with crushed walnuts shells. The shells themselves won’t come through the fabric but on woven materials (like cross stitch fabric) the dust will. I made the cording to match, and the backside Boo is taken from Boo To You by Prairie Schooler. The front and back are sewn together with a beaded whip stitch.

I know I won’t be blogging evey day, but I will try to keep it up a bit more often than I was before Halloween started. I will be busy later this week with The International Quilt Festival here in Houston & I will also get to see my partner in crime Annette. I’m very lucky she, her mother Pat, Cheryl, Amanda, Marie (who lives here – but she counts), and Jo are all planning on attending. I’ve been lucky enough to meet everyone but Amanda in person, but I just think it’s so wonderful to get together with all my “internet friends”.

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 19 Comments

Happy Halloween!

Yesterday’s winner was Cathey! Congrats and check your email.

Reminder: Comments on this post are locked, to win my prize & Annette’s (yes, one lucky person will get both!) you MUST go to Annette’s and enter on her Halloween post.

Here’s what you’ll be receiving from me (minus one thing not included in the pictures, I still want you to have a little surprise).

Candy!!! Thread winders, dish cloths & a sewing book!

Wicked Notions Sewing Book by Primitive Betty’s.  Stitched on hand dyed 28ct even weave with overdyed threads.  Wool felt and vintage buttons. Book is held closed with a big black oxide safety pin.

Inside, on the left a wool pocket held closed with a black safety pin for your scissor. On the right more safety pins to loop your thread on, for your spare buttons, needles & pins – with helpful labels all.

A set of Creepy Cloths by Kris Knits (go to her site to see better pictures of the cloths) knit by my Mother for this giveaway using Sugar & Cream cotton yarn. They’re all there, Pumpkin, Frankenstein, Ghost, Tombstone, Bat & Witch.

Happy Halloween!

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 1 Comment

30th Day of Halloween

Wow, it almost feels like Christmas Eve. Only with skulls.

And just to see who reads the posts & doesn’t just look at the pictures… Today is my husband’s birthday. Wish him a Happy Birthday in your comment and I’ll give you a second entry for today’s prize.

A quick note about tomorrow. Annette will be hosting. To get your name in the drawing for Halloween you have to go over to Annette’s. I will have a post tomorrow, but ENTRIES WILL ONLY BE TAKEN AT ANNETTE’S. One lucky winner will receive a package from both of us.  Comments will be locked on my post tomorrow so there won’t be any confusion.  I will also post this spiel again in tomorrow’s post.

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 46 Comments

Needle Minder Tutorial

So very simple.

You’ll need:

Cabochons: I’ve ordered from PinkyNoodles & Cathysjewels and recommend them both.  You can order your cabs from lots of different places, do a search on Etsy for cabochon + whatever your interest is. Cats, dogs, ships, skeletons etc. You will find what you want. All of my cabs are 40mm x 30mm. Any size is fine, so long as they are big enough to cover the magnet.

Magnets: I ordered from SunAndMoonCraftKits. I chose the 1/2″ size. Please note these magnets are not toys, these are the type that end badly when small children swallow them. If you have little ones in the house keep the loose (non-glued down) magnets away from kids who are still putting things in their mouths.

Also grab some cheap black magnets at the local craft store. These I seal with clear spray paint just to make sure they don’t mark your fabric. I do suppose you could use two of the rare earth magnets but I don’t because: If you have little ones you’ll have a loose magnet floating around. They are hard to pull apart.

Liquid Nails (E6000 is also good for this, but I’ve had trouble with the glue drying out inside the tube and I’m tired of paying for the whole tube when I only get to use a small amount before the rest spoils).

A pin you don’t care if it’s ruined.

Paper for a work surface & a paper towel.

Hold your magnet up against the back side of your cab and make sure it’ll grab the pin. Sometime I flip the magnet around and it seems stronger on one side. Might be my imagination.

Lay the cab down flat and have the magnet side to be glued facing up.

Put a dot of glue on the magnet. Just a little bit, you don’t need much. It’s called Liquid NAILS for a reason.

LIGHTLY press the magnet on to the back of the cab. I usually rotate the magnet and lightly squish it around to get the glue evenly spread between the pieces. A light touch is best here. Use the pin to remove excess glue that squeezes out, but if you use the right size dot of glue you won’t have any oozing out on you. And voila! it’s stuck.

Oops, you made a mistake. Too much glue, you made a mess, you let the magnet get too close to the other rare earth magnets and it pulled your freshly glued magnet from the cab (ask me how I know this can happen). It’s OK! When the glue is wet you can just wipe it off with the paper towel and re-do it.

See? All clean, like I never screw up. 😉

Over on the right you see a glued cab, on the left you see the stack of magnets. This is a safe distance. When laying the cabs to dry leave about 3 inches between each one (if you’re making more than one, which you should – these make inexpensive awesome little gifts) and you shouldn’t have any issues with the magnets pulling away from the wet glue.  I let them dry over night and then they’re ready to use. Just sandwich your fabric between the cabochon and one of the black magnets (note: when putting the black magnet against the rare earth one, there will be a right and wrong side – it’ll be obvious). If you’re just making one for yourself and don’t want to deal with spray painting them, painting them with a coat of clear nail polish should work. I have not tried that myself, so I can’t say for positive, but I think it’ll work ok.

There are also cabochon frames for sale that I think would be a nice addition. You would just glue your cab into the frame, then glue the magnet to the back side of the frame. It’s optional and up to you, just a thought if you wanted to dress your needle minder up.

One last tip, when you’re trying to get those rare earth magnets apart – push them. Pushing/sliding the top most one from the stack is much easier than trying to wedge a fingernail between them and popping them apart.

Posted in Tutorial | 10 Comments

I've got a thank you to say

To Plays With Needles! She had a giveaway on her blog for some extra books she had in her collection and I got lucky and won the bead embroidery book (yes, I’m thinking about it – as in I have the supplies and now a couple of books on the subject).

And the package was a 3 for 1. First  the lovely book, then a gorgeous photo that she took herself (seriously I’m so in love with picture, I’m buying a frame for it this weekend) and even the envelope was something special. She did a tutorial post for them too, check it out.  Thank you very much Susan!

P.S. Just add her blog to your reader now, it’s very fabulous and frankly – a drool factory.

Posted in Stitching | 2 Comments

Day 28 Winner

Is Valerie! Check your messages for my email. Don’t forget to go to Annette’s to try again.

I’ll have the tutorial for the needle minders up later today. I want them to have a post all to themselves.

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 3 Comments

28th Day of Halloween

Wow, we’re really almost there.  Today’s teaser:

Have fun with that.

Hmmm… got 3 packages in the mail right at this moment so I guess that’s it for this post. Tuesday evening I did take a class from the Wonderful Alma of Blackbird Designs and I did take a few pictures. I’ll try to work up a post about that later today if I have time. Or I may make you all wait until after Halloween. I’m sadistic like that.

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 46 Comments

Day 26 Winner

Will be announced late this afternoon. Sorry girls, I gotta work – stash doesn’t pay for itself.

Edited to add: Congrats to Lynn T. Be on the lookout for an email from me.

Posted in 31 Days of Halloween, Halloween, Stitching | 2 Comments